As I write this blog post, and after re-reading this interview, I feel extremely blessed that I get to connect and meet people who are so inspiring every single day. Some of these individuals end up becoming good friends. Bizznice is one of those people. I like to call him “Bizz.” We met a few years ago at a party where he was DJ’ing and became buddies right away. He is one of those super positive people that exudes nothing but good vibes. Every time I see him, he has a big smile on his face. I love the guy and respect his hustle, especially his love for Jersey City.
Bizz was born and raised in Jersey City and I always reach out to him to get different perspectives on things going on here – the changes, the good things, the bad things – and he has a healthy way of looking at things.
After so many years of working together and friendship, I wanted to sit down with him for an official interview to showcase all the cool shit he does. We sat down at Bob’s Parking Lot where he’s done some awesome block parties, and is also the location of his venture, the “Park & Munch” food truck.
We ate, we laughed and we hung out with momma Bizznice who, like her son, is a ball of positive energy.
I have the best job in the world.
What’s your name?
Bizznice. Rob Williams. Born and raised in Jersey City.
What do you do?
A few things. Today, we’re cooking! I run this food truck – Park & Munch – and Bob’s Parking Lot, and I’m a DJ.
What came first?
Music was always first, then business. I’m always busy.
So you’re born and raised in Jersey City. Tell me how it was growing up here.
Jersey City’s awesome, you know that. Growing up here was challenging, but amazing. With how I grew up here, I don’t think I would’ve been able to grow up in any other part of this world. It’s one of a kind. It’s so diverse, it’s always been diverse, and I feel like that’s something you don’t get everywhere.
In what part of Jersey City did you grow up?
Greenville. All my life, still residing there.
How do you feel about the changes? Jersey City’s changed a lot in the last decade or so.
It was expected. I travel and I’ve seen it happen, city after city. I embrace it, I embrace change. I always say change can be good. I don’t agree with doing things for money and ripping people out of their homes, but I expected change. We’re still in the middle of the changes with buildings here and there. I’m not against it, but I’m not for uprooting people and not putting them somewhere safe. Gentrification and change is inevitable. Especially here, we’re five minutes away from the city.
I want to know how Park & Munch happened! Did you just wake up one morning like, “I love hot dogs, I want it every day. I’m going to buy a food truck.”
It’s actually a very interesting story! To sum it up – through the parking lot, we’ve had tenants. One time, this truck was owned by someone who sold ice cream. He ended up having some type of emergency and had to liquidate his truck. I wasn’t intending on selling ice cream, but I saw it as a good opportunity to start something new. We started selling ice cream out of it, stocked up the freezers and rode around the hood, sold ice cream competing with Mister Softee. It wasn’t long before I realized that’s not what I wanted to do. I started to see a lot of carts pop up and the food truck wave started to happen. I just knew this wasn’t supposed to be an ice cream truck and I was not going to make money selling ice cream. So we started to do small items.
I remember when I came to an event here three years ago is when you first had it.
It’s funny because it’s been six or seven years that I’ve been struggling with this thing.
Yeah, and it was different. I came to an event and was starving. I saw the truck and ordered two burgers, and it was good!
I remember, that was the block party! It slowly evolved from ice cream and snacks to small items like hot dogs, burgers, shish-kabobs, things like that. Then I started to love it. I ran a small business in Secaucus and learned to love food and how running a business works.
We’re looking at a few of your specials here. You want to talk about them?
Yeah, these are a couple of the most popular items that come off the truck. We call this the Jersey City Philly Chopped Cheese; it’s basically a good Philly cheesesteak with no onions or peppers, light ketchup, light mayonnaise on a really good fresh roll.
We have a classic sauerkraut, fresh every day, with spicy mustard. We really try to keep everything fresh, from bread to toppings.
This is a classic mustard, ketchup hot dog. We get that a lot.
This one’s cool, it’s a jalapeño relish. A little bit sweet, a little bit hot. A little splash of mustard on there just to set it off.
This one’s been catching on. Just a classic sausage, pepper, and onion. A boardwalk steak sandwich.
What’s your top seller?
The Papa Dog. It’s named after our father, and that’s the number one seller for sure. It has homemade chili, fresh cheese, and potato stix on a bun. It’s the top seller online and in person. People love that one. The potato stix set it off.
I remember I posted a hot dog from Boulevard Drinks and you said yours was better.
Boulevard who? We don’t see nobody! Ha, shout out to Boulevard Drinks. I grew up on them, and they’re a huge part of why I chose hot dogs as the main focus and main food. It only made sense to me because it’s easy to prepare, but you can add so many spins to it. That’s why I chose a hot dog and anything on a long bun. That’s the mainstay of the truck, keep it simple.
And you’re here every day?
Every day! 11 to 6, and we do popups and events in Hudson County.
So if people have special events, can they hire you guys to come?
Absolutely. We’re @parknmunch on Instagram, you can DM us and we’ll try our best to make it to your event. We do popups, art shows, festivals, private parties.
Now that we’ve talked about Park & Munch, let’s talk about music. How did you start DJing?
I was pretty much born into music. My family’s always been about live sound, DJing equipment, building equipment, speaker boxes, things like that. I grew up around sound, it was inevitable. I chose to be a DJ over ten years ago and I love it. I love music and seeing people dance and have fun. I love the way music makes people feel. Kind of like food, I like to see people smile and have fun.
You are that kind of person. I’ve known you for years now and you’re the type of person who likes to see other people enjoy themselves. Literally, you’re one of the first people to support me when nobody knew who I was. You were like, “Oh I like what you’re doing, you’re cool.”
I remember I reached out when I first heard about you to come by the lot. It was just to come hang out, that’s how I get to know people.
Other than Bob’s Parking Lot and Park & Munch, do you have another favorite Jersey City hangout spot?
Everybody thinks I hang out a lot, I really don’t. I just like Jersey City in general. A place that I like to eat? I’m a big fan of Ani Ramen. Ani Ramen’s fairly new, but their food is undeniably good. I like the classic Jersey City staples, like Taqueria, BonChon Chicken, Just Beclaws. They come from a family of restauranteurs. I learned a lot from them, they’ve been working with food since they were kids.
What’s next for you?
I think I’m going to sit still and try to perfect what I have going on. I don’t think I need anything more. Right where I’m at, take care of this food truck like it’s my kid. Shout out to my babies!
How do you balance music, Park & Munch, family life, friends, art? People always ask me that and I don’t have an answer.
I don’t really have an answer. I just try to be present in everything that I do. I have to get this truck right and make sure the parking lot’s good. When it’s time to see my children, I spend time with my family. It’s just designating time and living presently. Do what means most to you in the order that it means most to you.
What advice would you give to young entrepreneurs or people looking to work for themselves? I always tell people, in order to make it as an entrepreneur, you have to have multiple side hustles. I don’t have just ChicpeaJC, I have multiple things, and it seems like you’re also doing the same thing. You do a bunch of different things to fill in all the gaps.
I’d say to stay at it, be persistent. Don’t let anybody tell you that what you’re doing is wrong, as long as you try and test it. Don’t just go foolishly in one direction. Try what you like, what you love, and don’t let anything get in the way. Just keep going at it. Even when it fails, it’s still a success, you know?
What about dealing with haters?
I don’t even know what they are. I’ve got too much love in my heart for anybody.
You really do. You only have good things to say.
There’s plenty of them out there, but I couldn’t name one. I don’t see them. I deal with people who hate by ignoring them.
You always tell me to ignore them.
If I ever have anything negative to say, I may say it to myself and forget about it. I don’t have time for that. I have too much going on.
We also have Mama Bizznice here! She’s on her phone, Instagramming, I love her. What’s one thing people don’t know about Bizznice?
They don’t know he has a big heart. A heart bigger than his body. To know him is to be with him. If you don’t meet him, you don’t know him. He’s one of the best, Jersey City’s Finest.
Bizz: I love her. She always pushes me to go hard. She’s the reason I am the way I am.
She’s beautiful. Children are a reflection of their parents, and I see you in her. She’s positive, friendly, warm.
She always encouraged me, even when I thought I was crazy.
You must be very proud!
I’m very proud of him. He’s going to make it big with this truck.
Thank you, it was pleasure. And we’re working on some fun events for the summer!
Absolutely, we have a community event coming up soon. TBA.
Let’s finish it with this last question: What is your theme song? The song that gets you going, that you’ll never get sick of.
I’m really into Bob Marley. Concrete Jungle is probably my favorite song ever in life. Bob Marley really gets my juices going. I know that sounds cliche, but to me he was such a deep individual and his music’s so deep, it lasts forever. I’m a huge Bob Marley fan.